We talk about how hot the market is, but not every seller is enjoying the benefit. Of the 850 NSDCC houses for sale, 41% of them have been on the market for 60 days or longer – and that’s not counting those that have been ‘refreshed’. These are ripe for a lowball offer.
But we live in a very polite marketplace, where buyers and agents alike are so concerned about offending people. You rarely see an offer that is more than 5% under list price, and it’s because buyers just figure that the seller wouldn’t take it, so instead they keep looking.
The agents working with buyers tend to be newer agents, and they don’t want to offend any of the seasoned listing agents either.
But lowball deals happen.
Have you seen a sale close for a price well under the list, and say to yourself, “Dang, I would have paid that amount”.
It’s usually a home that has been on the market for a long time and been forgotten, usually because the seller was reluctant to lower the price. Finally a lowball offer comes in and, well, heck – they just sign it out of frustration.
Many times the lowballer approaches the listing agent directly. The agent, motivated by the double-commission, then has to coax the seller down in price.
The sellers, who haven’t seen any other offers and are left to their own devices, make the deal – convinced it’s all they can get.
Note to Sellers: If you have a lowball offer on the table that you are thinking of taking, pause and take a breath. Then lower your price to the midpoint between your current list price, and their offer price for 24 hours, to see if any other bidders emerge.
There might be some polite buyers who would be happy to pay more than the lowballer, if they only knew you might take less!